This moment stayed with me throughout the entire election. From dinners with Janie (she still talked to me, of course) and her liberal, progressive friends, where I would nod and agree- even if I didn’t agree at all, to weekly Scrabble matches with my strictly Fox-watching, conservative family, where I would nod and agree- even if I didn’t agree at all. I was a mess. I felt there was no true place I could voice my opinion without feeling judged on a personal level rather than a political one. When that fateful time came and it was just me alone in the voting booth, I had no idea who I was, or what I stood for. Can a woman vote for Trump? Can a person who once voted for Mitt Romney vote for Hillary Clinton? I was conflicted then and I am conflicted now standing in my living room watching Donald Trump become the next President of the United States. How I wished I could go back to the days where my nail color and Barbie Steering Wheel were my defining qualities. Where all I wanted to be was like my mother, when identity was comfortable and familiar. Since when did identity, literally, become so political?
Juliet Davis’s e-literature text, “Pieces of Herself,” brings my exact realization out the subconscious and into an interactive moment accessible to everyone, where the doll, like me, discovers the significance of her identity through the people in her life, the settings she finds herself in, and the objects she fills herself with. Before returning to the contemporary, confusing moment we find ourselves in post-election, I would like to break down each component of Davis’s text into signifiers and connotations. By labeling each piece of the text and assigning meaning, we will be able to better analyze how to interact with the piece and fill the doll, according to unique preferences and understandings. Once we have broken down the components by designating each signifier and defining their use, we will be equipped to utilize these fragments to rebuild the barrier between personal and political identity for the doll as well as for us, the readers. So go on! Click below, Step One: Assign Signifiers to get started!